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L‑Acoustics system transforms Finnish hall into multipurpose venue

Kuusamo Hall in Finland now includes an L-Acoustics Kiva II system in its theatre, designed and installed by Audico.

Kuusamo, located six hours north of Helsinki, is a major centre for winter sports and one of the country’s most popular year-round tourist destinations. Kuusamo Hall, which hosts a variety of meetings, exhibitions, concerts and shows, now boasts improved flexibility making it a more attractive venue for visiting productions.

Kuusamo Hall was opened in the 1980s with the goal of offering visitors ‘unique experiences for all the senses’. Its wood clad theatre reflects the natural beauty of the Finnish countryside, providing a warm, inviting atmosphere to enjoy the varied musical events it hosts. Its audio system, however, had not been updated since the time of construction and comprised only flush mounted ceiling speakers. Although visually unobtrusive, they were unsuitable for visiting productions, imposing on each performer to bring their own PA.

‘The idea was to have a touring quality sound system already installed, so the only thing visiting acts need to do is set up mics and consoles to be ready for soundcheck’

“The premise of the new sound system was to make the venue more attractive to a wider variety of touring acts,” said Audico’s Pauli Molnár. “It’s a really beautiful hall, but with everyone bringing in their own equipment, load out times were long and the house technicians had to wait until guest engineers had packed everything up. It was extra work for everyone.”

The management team at Kuusamo Hall had heard other L-Acoustics systems installed by Audico, and wanted to specify it for this project.

“Kuusamo Hall is a multipurpose venue that hosts a large variety of music events,” explained Molnár. “The idea was to have a touring quality sound system already installed, so the only thing visiting acts need to do is set up mics and consoles to be ready for soundcheck.”

Audico visited the space in 2016 and submitted their recommendation during a tender process. Working alongside L‑Acoustics application engineer Gert Wiersema, Molnár kept the design of the system as simple as possible, choosing the ultra-compact Kiva II for its long throw capability and even SPL, which he knew would give consistent coverage across the entire auditorium.

Eight Kiva II topped with two SB15m subs are positioned either side of the stage, along with two centre hung SB18i subwoofers. Six 5XT are positioned across the stage lip as front fills and six X12 provide stage monitoring.

“The Kiva II system works extremely well and provides the consistent coverage the venue was after,” stated Molnár. “It has already been used for a variety of musical genres and everyone has been consistently pleased with the results. It’s even great for rock ‘n’ roll gigs, which they had found tricky before because the acoustics of the Hall are not ideally suited to the genre. This is now a true multipurpose venue that can host absolutely anything.”